Is the Operation of a Hearing Aid Impacted by Cold Weather?

Senior friends wearing aids enjoying a day on the slopes

Contrary to popular opinion, winter is fun! Well, if you need to go somewhere, it can certainly be difficult. Or if you don’t have the correct gear (or proper infrastructure). But there are plenty of fun things to do in those colder winter months.

Still not convinced? Sledding and skiing aren’t the only fun things you can do in the winter. You could have some fun on a snowmobile! Or you could grab a pair of ice skates and spend some time out on the ice. With the right gear, winter can be just as much of an outdoor season as spring, summer, or fall (and the hot chocolate is so much more rewarding when you’ve been outdoors in the cold).

But the secret here is using the appropriate gear. Perhaps you’re wondering if your hearing aid counts as part of that gear and whether it will be effected by the cold. Or can cold weather damage my hearing aids?

Most hearing aids are designed to be all-weather… to a point

Hearing aids are manufactured to be worn on a daily basis. They’re constructed so you can wear them to the grocery store, out on a hike, or just around the house. Which means that hearing aid makers understand that these devices may take a pounding. We don’t suggest you do anything drastic with your hearing aids, just remember that they’re made to go along with you throughout your normal daily activities.

The majority of hearing aids are built to be basically “all weather” as a result. Most hearing aids can operate quite nicely between the temperatures of -13 and 158 degrees Fahrenheit. That covers the broad spectrum of temperature possibilities (even though there are some places, particularly up north, that will occasionally get colder than -13 degrees).

You will be able to hear well in the majority of environments and that’s a great thing. So why don’t my hearing aids seem to work as well when it’s very cold? Hearing aids will function in the cold, just maybe not as well.

Guidelines for hearing aids in the winter

Luckily, there are certain things you can do to help ensure your hearing aids continue to function at maximum efficiency (or near enough) even in cold weather.

  • Keep your hearing aids secured in your ear by using accessories.: In order to be sure your hearing aids stay securely in place in your ears you can utilize one of many available clips or straps. This can be especially significant if you’re engaged in strenuous activity, like skiing, skating, or sledding.
  • Talk to us about the fit of your hearing aids: At times, when they get really cold, hearing aids can become uncomfortable. Minimize any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
  • Letting your hearing aids get wet isn’t a good idea: When snow melts, it’s wet, so be careful about exposing your hearing aids to snow. If you’re going to ask, “Well, can I wear hearing aids when it’s snowing or raining”? Yes, you can. Even though most hearing aren’t waterproof, they are usually water resistant. So while your hearing aid will probably be okay if it gets a little wet, you should dry it as soon as you can.
  • It helps to wear a hat or earmuffs: Wearing a hat or earmuffs will keep both your ears and your hearing aid toasty. And your hearing aids will function at their optimal level if they are warm. Your next question might be: can I wear ear muffs over my hearing aid without impacting my hearing? Most hearing aids will still work just fine with earmuffs on.
  • Check your batteries (and make sure they’re charged): Hearing aid batteries don’t necessarily freeze but they will die faster in the cold. So before you go out in the cold, be sure your battery is fully charged.
  • Keep your hearing aids someplace warm and dry when you aren’t using them: This will help stop moisture from causing problems with your hearing aids. Perhaps you’re not certain how to eliminate moisture from your hearing aid. In the majority of instances, you can dry it off and then put it someplace dry and warm.

So, if you’re wondering: how can I protect my hearing aids in the winter? That’s exactly what we’re going to find out.

What should you do if your hearing aids quit working?

Occasionally, unfortunately, your hearing aid will stop working even when the weather is warm and dry. There are a few straightforward troubleshooting steps you can take (for instance, make sure the batteries are charged and that your devices are good and dry). If you still aren’t able to figure out why they aren’t working, we should be able to help you with that.

You can still enjoy life even when it’s cold!

When it’s -10 degrees outside, it’s understandable that you would want to stay inside. Perhaps you don’t enjoy the cold. Maybe a nice hot bowl of soup would hit the spot. Maybe snowmobiles aren’t your jam. The essential thing is that it shouldn’t be your hearing aids that are preventing you from living your best winter life.

That’s particularly true if you take care of your devices, and observe the guidelines outlined above. If you have any questions about how cold weather could effect the performance of your hearing aids, talk to us today!

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.